A site for my handmade cards, accompanied by my photos and written meanderings which are occasionally witty, often tongue-in-cheek, and rarely profound. Beginning in June 2013, you'll also see lots of NBUS, which is an acronym I coined for Never-Before-Used-Schtuff. Note: my Privacy Policy can be found at a tab below and you can find my NBUS Challenge online. I hope you'll join in the fun there! Thanks for coming by! Have a beverage and enjoy!



Most commonly asked question:  size?  It is 10x 12 (120 square feet).

When we finally relandscaped our back yard after more than 30 years, I got to have a shed for my hobby and my husband got his garage back. I'd been crafting in the garage, with no windows and no insulation, for ten years! 

It's been a little over a year now and the shed has gone through several name changes. The "shed" certainly wasn't going to cut it. My "studio" seemed too, too for me. I settled on my "workshop" until my grandson Adam asked one day if he could go out to my "playhouse." Playhouse? Well, gee, of course, why didn't I think of that?!

Here is my Playhouse!

And inside you will find examples of my OCD, which I prefer to think of as:

Organized Crafting Display/Disorder/Disease ©

Edited to add: The west wall above has been updated as of November 2016. You can find details on this post. It now looks like this:
It's so nice to have things counter-high now!

Unfortunately, this deep shallow drawer cabinet was purchased from a friend who had purchased it at a knitting store that was going out of business.  They are sometimes called "map drawers" or "architect's drawers" (for plans).  I believe new ones are very expensive, but  maybe one could be found on Craig's List or on EBay.  It's the best thing I own.  It perfectly displays hundreds of wooden stamps in those very deep drawers. 


And, yes, that beautiful desk DOES get used!



I think the pictures above are fairly self-explanatory, but I've had people ask for details, so I've taken a few additional pictures (below) and will explain how I organized my crafting playhouse.  Perhaps you will like some of what you see and be able to use it, or be inspired by it.  I know I looked around the Web to try and find blogs such as this when I was planning the space.

What I also know is that organization is such a very personal thing.  What works for one person will definitely not work for another person.  Some people can work with a cluttered work space, other people have to have it clean and uncluttered.  To each her own, but I'm happy to have you visit and see if anything at all works for you.

I learned in ten years of stamping that I had a brain that preferred my papers, pens, ink pads, and ribbons to be organized by color and my stamps to be organized by theme.  Now that I am entering challenges, people want to know, for instance, what Stampin Up! set a particular stamp is from and I usually have no clue because I break up the sets as you'll see in the close-up below.  It would give some people hives, but it's what works best for me.

As you can see in the panned shots of the space above, there are several black filing cabinets around the room.  I got these cabinets inexpensively at Office Max, but for years in the garage I used old beat-up thrift store cabinets and they worked perfectly well.  Each cabinet is organized by color.  Here is a close-up of the "green" cabinet, as an example:

So far this has proven to be the most efficient way for me to work.  The bottom drawer containing the paper used to have paper placed simply from light to dark, no matter what brand.  Now I am starting to put the SU papers in file folders by name so I can post the right name of what color I use if it's SU paper.

Here is a close-up of one of the drawers in my main stamp cabinet.  (I also have stamps in the cabinet below and in some of the cabinets above.)  This is my "birthday" drawer:

This just works best for me.  I found that if I left the SU stamps in their "sets," I wouldn't remember that, for instance, a thank you set also contained a flower.  With my poor memory, I make more use of my stamps by putting all the thank you stamps together and all the flower stamps together, and so on. 

Here is a close-up of the 12x12 acrylic bins which hold my patterned paper.  Of course the paper is organized by theme (circles, stripes, kids, etc).  I tried organizing the sheets by color, but found that with the patterned paper, that didn't work for me.  I use them more often now that I've organized them by theme.  The bins are Display Dynamics Perfect Paper Stackable Paper Trays from Scrapbook.com.

And finally, since the original pictures were taken, I have put this sweet cabinet in one of the corners, instead of a bookcase, and it holds a bunch more stuff.  All my reinkers, embossing powders, glitters, Cuttlebug plates, and punches are in the drawers.

Further updates to the inside of the Playhouse in terms of cabinets and storage have been made. They can be found at:

September 24, 2013 (Revamp of 12x12 paper storage and Wall of Art added)

January 8, 2013 (new wall cabinet added)


I thought you might like to see a picture of me "paying my dues" crafting in the garage for ten years! I started this hobby in 2002; this was taken in 2006.


The Playhouse was finished in the fall of 2011. This picture of me in the Playhouse was taken in 2012:

Feel free to email me (darnell dot knauss at gmail dot com) or post a comment if you have any questions about how I organize my crap craft supplies.  Thanks for looking!

Please enjoy!


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Karen L K said...

Wow super cool. So very nice to have your space like that and look out into a beautiful backyard. I am lucky I have a room to myself. However mine is a little bit messier than yours.. always. It is organized in some ways too.

Fikreta said...

love your playhouse!
I want to come and play :D
its gorgeous!

hugs, Ŧĭƙĭ

Ina G said...

I'm coming to play Darnell! I WISH. What an awesome playhouse. You have way to much SCHTUFF my Friend.

Di Di W said...

Your playroom is wonderful! I appreciate your organization tips, but when you said you break up your sets, I about had a panic atrack! Haha. Thanks for sharing your beautiful space.

Mother Ship said...

I stumbled on your blog and am so glad. I am so inspired by your cards, and especially by your crafting playhouse! I am, at the time, trying to reorganize my papercrafting room/guest room so it will look nice and clean for company and still be functional for me. As our four children moved out on their own we were left with three extra rooms. One for my hubby's study, one for my sewing room and we split the use of the last one. I will be using many of your ideas as I continue to organize and beautify my overstuffed, happy guest/paper room. Thank you for sharing your life with others.

Poppyfield Card Crafts said...

That is one gorgeous play house Darnell

Happy crafting....

June :D

Degoodsbystephanie said...

Oh my gosh! First I’d like to say what a beautiful backyard! And second wow what a great playhouse! I’m so jealous! Way to go on getting your own little sanctuary you deserved it!

wannabcre8tive said...

I just love your playhouse, it is as cute as can be. Such a nice place to craft.

Ivana Camdzic said...

Oh Darnell! This is the first thing I saw when I popped over to your blog and I just HAD to click on it. I mean, who doesn't want to go inside your adorable, beautiful playhouse! What a darling space and what a fantastic post you've written! I am currently amidst some renos, albeit indoors, for a future craft space, and I just love seeing how fellow crafters organize their spaces. I am very much like you (OCD in the best possible way, I like to think!) and I loved seeing all of your organization. I want to say heaps of thanks for visiting my blog, and for leaving such sweet notes! I'm so sorry it's taken me a bit to get back to you. Heaps of crafty hugs!!! xoxox

Elena C said...

Thank you for sharing about your PLAYHOUSE!!! What a FUN way to see the craft you love. I have a small bedroom that is filled to the brim with my very loved supplies. I am very blessed to have that room for my very own and now I will refer to it as MY PLAYROOM!!! Hope you don't mind, but it's the best name I have heard!!!

thanks again,

Jo said...

A beautiful oasis, well worth the wait, BRAVO 👏, HUGz, Joanna xx

Allison Clark said...

Oh WOW, you have such a fabulous craft area! I am fortunate to have a large room that is all mine too... fitted out by Ikea LOL... I should tidy mine and take a few photos LOL, thank you so much for you're kind words and being my newest follower.. hugs Alli (creativeclark.blogspot.com)

Karen Brown said...

I loved seeing all the pictures of your playhouse! So much storage in your cottage! I have a lovely home office where I create my cards but I have to be very careful about what I buy so that it fits.

Surekha Galagoda said...

Dear Darnell'
Thank you for showcasing the playhouse. I am going to bk mark it. At the moment i am mobile between New Zealand and Sri Lanka so half my supplies are there and half are here in Sri Lanka at the moment. I brought my machine and some essentials but when i go to craft i realise i don't have most of it and feel stingy to invest again. Lol. I am planning to sew some cases for my tools etc and learn to be mobile until my grand daughter is big. She is the best blessing God has ever given me.
I am yet to find a mobile solution for crafting. Any suggestions pls tell me. LOVE, Love , Love your play house and the set of deep drawers etc. I also like to keep my stamps by theme but reluctant to take them from the original packagin. Mad me. Blessings to your family from mine.

Mariann Jakobsen said...

You're playhouse is awesome!! LOVE it!!!
Hugs from N-Norway, ypur new follower :)

Sue Duffy said...

OMG! A stampin' She Shed! I'm so jealous, but TFS!

shelly.scherbarth said...

First of all~ so so SO jealous...I want (need) a detached art studio/Nana cave so badly...maybe when we hit our 30th anniversary in 2024 😉 Yours is exactly what I have in mind! I also just have to say, I have pic of me sitting at my desk that looks nearly identical to the first one you have posted here with your knee up on the chair, if I ever find it (not digital😕) i’ll have to zip it over to ya.

Thank you for all your contributions and shares, keep the creative fires burning and stay safe!

Shelly Scherbarth

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